Associate Conservator, Time-based Media

Job details:
The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation
Expiring Date: 08 September 2019
Date: 10 July 2019
Sector: Media and Journalism
Function: Research and Development
Contract: Full Time
Salary: Salary according to the experience
Place of work: United States (New York)
The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation

Job Description

Associate Conservator, Time-based Media

The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation is seeking an Associate Conservator in Time-based Media to join its Conservation Department.  The ideal candidate will have a Master’s degree from a recognized conservation program, and possess extensive knowledge of modern and contemporary art.  Experience working with time-based media collections is essential; as well as knowledge of the best practices for condition assessment, documentation, installation, and preservation of TBM works in a range of analog and digital formats. Candidates should possess advanced IT skills, including experience with digital asset management systems and server-based storage systems.

Given the expansive nature of preserving time-based media art, excellent project management, problem-solving, and communication skills (writing and speaking) are required. An important aspect of this role will be teamwork across departments within the museum as well as collaboration with students and external specialists.

Founded in 1937, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation is dedicated to promoting the understanding and appreciation of art, architecture, and other manifestations of visual culture, primarily of the modern and contemporary periods.  The Guggenheim realizes this mission through exceptional exhibitions, education programs, research initiatives, and publications.  The Guggenheim strives to engage and educate an increasingly diverse international audience through its unique network of museums and partnerships.  With nearly three million annual visitors worldwide, the Guggenheim and its network is one of the most visited cultural institutions in the world.


As a member of the Conservation Department, the Associate Conservator, Time-based Media is responsible for the care and preservation of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum’s collection of time-based media art. The Guggenheim is a pioneer in acquiring and exhibiting media art, with key pieces by artists such as Vito Acconci, Tacita Dean, Jenny Holzer, Bruce Nauman, Nam June Paik, Pipilotti Rist, and Bill Viola.  The Guggenheim has advanced the field of contemporary art conservation with its role in the Variable Media Initiative (1999-2004) and CCBA (Conservation of Computer Based Art), and continues to be at the forefront of developing and establishing best practices for the conservation of time-based media art internationally.

The full-time Associate Conservator, Time-based Media will have the opportunity to develop conservation strategies, workflows, and procedures for the preservation and documentation of time-based media artworks in the museum’s collection. The Associate Conservator will work as part of a multi-disciplinary team under the leadership of the Chief Conservator. Areas of research, lectures and publication will be encouraged, in order to make time-based media more accessible to a wider public.


Responsibilities include managing time-based media fellows and interns as required.


  • Perform technical examination and documentation of TBM works, including film, video, software-based, electronic, performance, and other formats that may emerge.
  • Explore and research a wide range of unconventional materials and technology as needed to implement the conservation of assigned works of art. 
  • Develop institutional policies and best practices for preservation of TBM works with the goal of achieving a sustainable cross-departmental approach to managing, storing, accessing, and preserving artwork.
  • Carry out treatment strategies for media artworks.
  • Facilitate loan of media works for successful exhibition at borrowing institutions.
  • Work with exhibition team to prepare works and oversee/document installations.
  • Travel to international venues if necessary to supervise and document the installation of collection works.
  • Collaborate with living artists, artists’ estates and studios to determine appropriate parameters for exhibition and preservation of TBM art, including emulation or migration strategies.
  • Supervise time-based media interns and fellows.


  • Advanced degree from a recognized conservation program.
  • Five years of museum experience, or equivalent.
  • Understanding of the field of time-based or digital art and a willingness to explore and research a wide range of materials and technology.
  • Demonstrated ability to collaborate with colleagues and communicate with professionals outside of area of expertise.
  • Knowledge and interest in contemporary art.
  • Must be flexible and creative, with proven problem-solving ability.
  • Strong interpersonal and written communication skills are required.
  • Ability to travel for museum business, as needed.
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced and challenging environment.

The Guggenheim offers a competitive salary and excellent medical, life, disability and retirement plan coverage.  Our staff also enjoys generous vacation, sick leave and personal days, access to a variety of cultural institutions, discounts to museum stores and an interesting work environment.

Guggenheim Foundation is an equal opportunity employer.
 Department: Conservation
This is a non-management position
This is a full-time position

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